“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."
A HARD HITTING PIECE ON CLINTON FROM THE GUARDIAN:ReplyDelete
“Hello. I am Hillary Rodham Clinton, and this is the Graham Norton Show.” The almost-holder of what was once the loftiest imaginable office was surprisingly game for a bit of British kitsch: warm, indulgent and dressed in yellow, like a president on a kindergarten walkabout.
She is still too grand for some of Graham Norton’s antics. She wasn’t sold on the idea of sharing a sofa with another celebrity. You cannot blame her. The chat-trading of Norton’s ersatz dinner party environment is inherently high-risk. You could be in the middle of the most profoundly revealing story – one you could have saved for a love affair, or your Vanity Fair profile – and be eclipsed by someone’s anecdote about finding a caterpillar in their cheese sandwich.
So it was just her in the beam of Norton’s irresistible curiosity. And while she has a book to promote – What Happened – there was still this pressing incongruity of her normality. She arrived on stage wearing a surgical boot which she explained in an anecdote neither interesting nor uninteresting, just ambiently pleasant to listen to, like cicadas. “I was running down the stairs in heels with a cup of coffee in hand,” – a break for a short homily on how unwise it was to run with coffee – “I was talking over my shoulder and my heel caught and I fell backwards”. She broke her toe. She had excellent medical care from our “English medical system” (little shout out for the NHS, thoughtful and serendipitous). Well. You sound perfectly … nice. How come nobody ever mentions that you’re perfectly nice?
Graham Norton’s line of questioning was pretty bold: did she feel jinxed? You know, all geared up in 2008, then Obama came along (“well he was an excellent president”). Then in 2016 Bernie Sanders came along (though he didn’t actually win; so if Norton’s hypothesis was correct and the universe was working against her, it was pretty part-time work). Then Trump, of course. She didn’t take this head on (is there an answer, to “are you jinxed?”).
But about her feelings, upon losing, she was perfectly plain: she felt terrible. She felt responsible. “It was such a surprise: it was so shocking and obviously devastating.” There remains a slight disconnect between the words and the calm, sunny delivery but it’s not dissembling so much as a generalised disconnect. You can’t stay shocked forever.
MORE FROM THE GRANDMOTHERLY CHARMER:ReplyDelete
A former president can give a view on almost anything, past dignities conferring importance upon their every thought. A former nearly-president has to choose their topic. Al Gore had the environment. Hillary’s cause is that Donald Trump is bad. Like climate change, it is unarguable but it still needs saying – and she will not rest until she’s said it a lot of times. Describing the inauguration, she insisted: “I wanted him to rise to the occasion and be our president. That didn’t happen. We were listening to this really dark, divisive speech … a cry from the white nationalist gut. I am was so disappointed, so sad.” The best line, she gives to George W Bush, who reputedly turned around and said: “That was some weird shit.”
… a cry from the white nationalist gut.ReplyDelete
Gee, where have we heard that recently? Oh, yes, the amazing speech of George Genius so recently and so eloquently spoken and widely lauded by all the usual suspects.
Georgie Boy, Demosthenes, now of Crawford, reincarnated, was just tripping all over his tongue with "isms" and "isms"ReplyDelete
FOR THE RECORDReplyDelete
Demosthenes lived in Athens from 384 B.C. to 322 B.C. As a young man, he suffered from a speech impediment—which may have been a stutter, an inability to pronounce the “r” sound, or both. (Harken "nuclear")
He designed a series of exercises for himself to improve his speech. According to legend, he practiced speaking with stones in his mouth, which forced him to work very hard to get the sounds out.
When his diction became clearer, he got rid of the stones and found he was able to enunciate much more effectively than before. He also practiced reciting speeches while running and speaking over the roar of ocean waves to improve his projection. These strategies must have worked, because Demosthenes achieved fame as the greatest orator in ancient Greece. He is best known for his passionate speeches urging the Greek citizens to defend themselves against invading Macedonian king Philip II.
No doubt about the reincarnation.
JEFF SESSIONS UPDATEReplyDelete
Testifying in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee this week, Attorney General Jeff Sessions defended President Trump's decision to fire FBI James Comey and slammed his handling of the criminal investigation into Hillary Clinton's mishandling of highly classified information on her private email server.
"I don't think it's been fully understood the significance of the error Mr. Comey made on the Clinton matter," Sessions said. "For the first time in all of my experience and I don't think I've heard of any situation in which a major case, in which the Department of Justice prosecutors were involved in the investigation that the investigative agency announces the closure of the investigation."
"Then a few weeks before this happened, he was testifying before the Congress, Mr. Comey was, he said he did the right thing and would do it again," he continued, adding Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein believed the move was a completely inappropriate usurpation of DOJ.
Seriously, maybe Sessions is playing the long game.ReplyDelete
... Long game .... RightDelete
Which brings us back to Granny Grifter. After eight years of Clinton, Obama and Eric Holder, there is a lot of work to do. Do stay in touch.ReplyDelete
MADRID — In an unexpectedly forceful attempt to stop Catalan secessionism in its tracks, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy of Spain announced on Saturday that he would begin the process of removing the region’s separatist leader, Carles Puigdemont, from office.ReplyDelete
After calling an emergency meeting of the Spanish cabinet, Mr. Rajoy announced the process to begin taking back control of the independence-minded region by invoking Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution — a broad tool that has been threatened once before but never used.
Mr. Rajoy said the Catalan government never offered real dialogue with the central government in Madrid but instead tried to impose its secessionist project in violation of Spain’s Constitution.
He said his government was putting an end to “a unilateral process, contrary to the law and searching for confrontation” because “no government of any democratic country can accept that the law be violated, ignored and changed.”
Mr. Rajoy added, “What I have faced is something that I have never confronted in my many years in politics, but I didn’t choose my interlocutor.”
Good Judge Jeanine VIDEO embedded in this article -ReplyDelete
October 21, 2017Delete
Judge Jeanine on the Clintons: 'These people belong in jail'
By Thomas Lifson
All you need, a conviction.Delete
All that is lacking, a legal case against them, that can be successfully prosecuted.
Trump Defeats ISIS In Months — After Years Of Excuses From ObamaReplyDelete
5:06 PM ET
Terrorism: Nine months after President Trump promised to defeat ISIS "quickly and effectively," U.S.-backed forces captured Raqqa, which until Tuesday had served as the ISIS capital. The battle now is over who deserves credit: Trump or President Obama.
Trump, not surprisingly, claims it for himself: "It had to do with the people I put in and it had to do with rules of engagement," Trump said in a radio interview.
Before dismissing this as typical Trump self-aggrandizement, consider that for several years Obama insisted that a quick and decisive victory against ISIS was all but impossible.
After belittling ISIS as a "JV" team and then being surprised by its advances, Obama finally got around to announcing a strategy to "degrade and ultimately destroy" the militant Islamic group.
As his strategy dragged on and seemed to go nowhere, Obama kept telling the country that this was just the nature of the beast.
"It will take time to eradicate a cancer like (ISIS). It will take time to root them out."
"This is a long-term and extremely complex challenge."
"This will not be quick."
"There will be setbacks and there will be successes."
"We must be patient and flexible in our efforts; this is a multiyear fight and there will be challenges along the way."
Autoplay: On | OffAnd he kept insisting that winning the war against ISIS has as much to do with public relations as it did weapons. "This broader challenge of countering extremism is not simply a military effort. Ideologies are not defeated with guns, they are defeated by better ideas."
What Obama didn't say is that reason defeating ISIS was taking so long was of how he was fighting it.Delete
A former senior military commander in the region told the Washington Examiner that the Obama White House was micromanaging the war "to the degree that it was just as bad, if not worse, than during the Johnson administration." Johnson, you will recall, once bragged that "they can't bomb an outhouse in Vietnam without my permission."
Contrast this with Trump. Rather than talk endlessly about how long and hard the fight would be, Trump said during his campaign that, if elected, he would convene his "top generals and give them a simple instruction. They will have 30 days to submit to the Oval Office a plan for soundly and quickly defeating ISIS."
Once in office, Trump made several changes in the way the war was fought, the most important of which were to loosen the rules of engagement and give more decision-making authority to battlefield commanders.
Joshua Keating, writing in the liberal commentary site Slate, noted that Trump had "instructed the Pentagon to loosen the rules of engagement for airstrikes to the minimum required by international law, eliminated White House oversight procedures meant to protect civilians, and ordered the CIA to resume covert targeted killing missions." (He meant it as a criticism.)
Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, who can hardly be called a Trump lap dog, praised what he said was "a dramatic shift in a very positive way — away from the political micromanaging of the Obama years to freeing up generals and troops to destroy ISIS."
The result of this shift seems pretty obvious. In July, ISIS was booted from Mosul, and this week Raqqa was liberated. For all intents and purposes, ISIS has been defeated. Trump did in nine months what Obama couldn't in the previous three years.
Trump's critics will insist that victory was inevitable, given that Obama had severely degraded ISIS over the previous years, and that all Trump did was continue Obama's strategy.
But the bottom line is that while Obama preached patience, Trump promised a swift end to ISIS, and then delivered on it.
So "Draft Dodger, you are claiming ISIS is now defeated.Delete
ISIS beaten by local troops. And OS and Russian Close Air Support
In orher words Mr Trump utilized the "Rat Doctrine" ... and won.
Successful stratgic and taxtial campaign, as predictsed, here
Winning is so satifying
... And US and Russian Close Air SupportDelete
IS, the caliphate, a Baghdadi wet dream from the start, is gone; but that was doomed from the beginning.
ISIS the organization still lives as was also predicted from the beginning. It has simply given up its pretensions of being an actual state with conventional forces and returned to the asymmetric tactics it started with.
They lost all pretensions to a caliphate in Syria/Iraq but they remain active in both as we have seen in the large scale attacks in Baghdad. In addition, they have metastasized into numerous other countries including Niger (if you can believe our military) as we have seen in the attack that took the lives of those for US special forces troops.
This was all predictable AND predicted in the first days of the war.
As for tactics, the rat doctrine played a part (as it has since WWI) but it was hardly a deciding factor. The entrance of Russia into the war in Syria, massive bombing of oil convoys and cities which gutted IS leaders, troops, and finances, the retraining and arming of the Iraqi troops, and the change of the ROE were just as important or even more important, as in the case of the Russian bombing that degraded IS' finances, in taking out the caliphate as the close air support.
Donald Trump is declassifying the last JFK files.ReplyDelete
and ... ???Delete
The 'Real Story' is still ...ReplyDelete
FOUR DEAD IN NIGER
Trump continues to stonewall
In the Senate ... The Armed Services Committee will be investigating.
Senator McCain checking into military mismanagement by the Trump Administration.
That should be interesting to see.
Is Niger Trumps Benghazi?
The investigations of Clinton over Benghazi went on for months and was centered mostly on an alleged cover up and misinformation campaign by the State Department to cover up any Clinton responsibility. The GOP tried desperately to link the fiasco in Libya to Clinton and with any luck to Obama. Other than convincing the choir, they came up short. Later they tried to lay responsibility on her for the arms shipped to Syria and the ME. Again, they came up short in providing any definitive proof (of course, Clinton's private server didn't help matters).
I watched these hearings from a distance with little interest. My main interest in the affair was the fact that Clinton failed in her job as SOS by refusing to provide the security that was requested by the people on the ground in Libya. It appeared to me the decision not to support those requests was deliberate and based on politics rather than the safety of our people on the ground.
This issue was raised early and then seemingly forgotten in the effort to pin something on Clinton/Obama for the collusion and cover-up.
Now, certain Dems are asking the question "Is Niger Trump's Benghazi". As rat says the hearings should be interesting.
The only thing I've seen reported so far that would connect the two is the fact that there appears to have been a number of requests from the troops on the ground for additional security and air support, requests that went unanswered for whatever reason.
failed ... by refusing to provide the security that was requested by the people on the ground in Libya.
requests from the troops on the ground for additional security and air support, requests that went unanswered for whatever reason.
Senator McCain will be tasked to find out who in the Trump Administration made the strategic decision to go, or remain, on a military mission to Niger, undermanned?
Without adequate support.
Who let our Special Forces troops twisting in the wind, without air support?
Not even a Predator drone.
Why did the US spend $100 million on a drone base in Niger, then not utilize drones to support US troops in the field?
Peggy Noonan is a frequent conservative commentator on the cable news shows. It pains me to watch her. Her saccharine, schoolmarm delivery grates on the nerves; but I'll admit she is a pretty good writer.
Here is the title of one of her articles from the WSJ...
Trump May Be Following Palin’s Trajectory
Support for her cooled due to antic statements, intellectual thinness and general strangeness.
Pretty good though not all-inclusive.
Lots of rat turds thrown about the cage by Self Confessed War Criminal, Dead Beat Dad, Jew Hater and Liar above.ReplyDelete
That being so, I head to nap time. It's never worth it when he is around.
Cheers to all you others !
And so you start it up again, dipshit.
The last resort of someone who has nothing to say but is compelled to say something.
It's been fairly peaceful around here for a while now.
boobie is missing his Uncle Hank.
You are correct, Q, he has no other way articulate his lack of mental acuity.
I apologize for the 'dipshit'.
It's become habit but it was unnecessary and adds nothing of value to the comment.
If you have an Army and your choices of whom to run it are General Quirk, and General rat, choose General Quirk. The war will go better and your troops won't be involved in war crimes.ReplyDelete
* Hausa 53.1%
* Zarma/Songhai 21.2%
* Tuareg 11%
*Fulani (Peul) 6.5%
* Kanuri 5.9%
* Gurma 0.8%
* Arab 0.4%
* Tubu 0.4%, other/unavailable 0.9% (2006 est.)
* Demographic profile: Niger has the highest total fertility rate (TFR) of any country in the world, averaging close to 7 children per woman in 2016
* Youth (15-24 years) literacy rate (%) 2008-2012*, male 52.4 %
* Youth (15-24 years) literacy rate (%) 2008-2012*, female 23.2 %
* Average IQ: 69
Africa is a sewer and Niger is the asshole.
Yes, I do have to strain my imagination -ReplyDelete
John Kelly And The Language Of The Military Coup
At a White House press briefing this week, John Kelly gave Americans a sense of what military discipline in the Trump Administration sounds like.
Consider this nightmare scenario: a military coup. You don’t have to strain your imagination—all you have to do is watch Thursday’s White House press briefing, in which the chief of staff, John Kelly, defended President Trump’s phone call to a military widow, Myeshia Johnson. The press briefing could serve as a preview of what a military coup in this country....
Your favorite site to reference.Delete
General at Defence, another "1st" for Mr Trump.
A General as NSA
And as Chief of Staff
What would a coup look like, in the US, if not what we have?
No need for tanks in the streets, they already have the President held 'hostage', at the adult day care center, often referred to as the White House
What a stupid comment.Delete
I found that content disturbing.Delete
Mohamed Ahmed Abu-ShliebaReplyDelete
Nothing but coffee coupons here.Delete
Another EU country has voted sanity -ReplyDelete
'Czech Trump' clinches election victory, eurosceptics boosted
Jan FLEMR and Jan MARCHAL
,AFP•October 21, 2017
9.7-million-year-old teeth discovery in Germany could re-write human historyReplyDelete
Gabriel Borrud, Deutsche Welle Published 11:10 a.m. ET Oct. 21, 2017 | Updated 1:52 p.m. ET Oct. 21, 2017
We may have to rethink the entire history of mankind after german scientists discovered 9.7-million-year-old teeth.
(Photo: Deutsche Welle)
The great ape teeth found in Eppelsheim last year could topple the understanding of our earliest history. Herbert Lutz, head of the excavation team, tells Deutsche Welle what the find means to him — and how it almost didn’t happen.
A little over a year ago, a team of archaeologists in southwestern Germany uncovered two teeth where the Rhine River used to flow, in the town of Eppelsheim near Mainz.
The news of the discovery was announced this week, because the team that performed the excavation wanted to make sure that what they had found was as significant as they initially thought.
Herbert Lutz heads that team at the Natural History Museum in Mainz.
Herbert Lutz: It's completely new to science, and it is a big surprise because nobody had expected such a tremendous, extremely rare discovery. To find a completely new species? Nobody expected that.
Deutsche Welle (DW): Why were you looking at this precise location?
HL: We were excavating riverbed sediments of the proto-Rhine River near Eppelsheim. These sediments are approximately 10 million years old and are well known in science, ever since the first fossils were excavated here in the early 19th century.
DW: And how old are the teeth you've found?
HL: Around 9.7 million years old.
DW: What does a 9.7-million-year-old tooth look like?
HL: It's perfectly preserved. It actually looks like a new excellent tooth; however, it's no longer white. It's shining like amber.
DW:No less has been said about this tooth than that the history of mankind now has to be rewritten…Delete
HL: Well you know it's a question that's been discussed for decades. New discoveries lead to new insights that may contribute to our knowledge about our own history, and this finding has that potential because the great ape species has a relationship to Homo sapiens.
DW: So what's the big groundbreaking knowledge here?
HL: The groundbreaking knowledge is that we have comparable finds only in East Africa. And these are much, much younger. These species are well known as Ardi and Lucy, and their canines look very similar to the one here from Eppelsheim, but they are only two, three, four or five million years old, and Eppelsheim is almost 10. So the question is: What has happened?
DW: You mean - how this great ape got up to the Rhine valley, or whether the species in Africa came from Europe?
HL: Yeah, we have similar species in Africa, but we don't know where this great ape came from. We do not have comparable finds from southern Europe, even from in between maybe Greece or Turkey. From there, we know of great ape fossils, but they all look much different. And so it's a great mystery.
DW: So this is the lone Rhineland monkey whose teeth have been found. Can the general public see the discovery?
HL: Until Sunday, yes, they are in our exhibition in the museum in Mainz. And most likely about mid November they will be on display in a great exhibition in the Landesmuseum in Mainz.
DW: Professor Lutz, can you give us a sense of how important this finding was to you personally?
HL: Well, we've been digging at this site for 17 years now. And when we started, of course everybody knew it had the potential to yield hominoid fossils. We were always waiting for such a find. But at the end of 2016, we decided to finish the excavation and just in the last second, if you will, these two teeth came to light. We really weren't expecting such a tremendous discovery. So for us now it's clear we have to continue, and we will continue. And, well, I think it's a big luck to experience such an exciting story. I did not expect it.
Professor Herbert Lutz is deputy director of the Natural History Museum in Mainz. His focus is geological and paleontological excavation
THERA ARE DIPSHITS and DEEP DIPSHITS:ReplyDelete
They like him. They really, really like him.
Former President George W. Bush (But still a deep dipshit) discovered this week that all he had to do to make the media finally like him was take a rhetorical swing at Donald Trump.
And it didn’t hurt that he teamed up with Barack Obama to do it. The result was a media swoon. The New York Times crooned: “Without Saying ‘Trump,’ Bush and Obama Deliver Implicit Rebukes.”
The #Resistance found its new power couple!
But wait, there’s more! The Times also printed a fawning profile of Bush’s twin daughters, Barbara and Jenna. You’ve come a long way, babies, from the tabloid accounts of drunken college revelries.
Now that their father has teamed up with Obama and the Clintons, the girls are enjoying the sort of media love that only Democrat daughters get. In fact, Barbara and Jenna are kind of like a double Chelsea—with Planned Parenthood fundraising and all.
It’s as if the Obamas, Clintons, and Bushes have formed a sort of Establishment extended family. Dubya even likes to call Bill his “brother with a different mother.”
So is it any wonder that George finally joined Barry, Bill, and Hill in bashing Don? Trump, for all his wealth, has never been one of the beautiful people.
The Establishment despises Trump, but they don’t fear him. They fear his Deplorables—the ordinary Americans from every race, religion, gender, and background who catapulted Trump to victory.
The Deplorables are busy polishing their armor for Steve Bannon’s 2018 “season of war” against the Establishment, which is why Bush rose up to denounce them in his speech on Thursday.
He thinks these Deplorable populists are racists preaching the super dangerous idea that American policies should benefit Americans first (See?! That’s proof they hate foreigners!). He believes this monstrous sentiment must be consigned to the ash heap of history … or, like, wherever they hid Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction so that no one could find them.
Dip Shit GWBDelete
Bush has seemingly always been a dick.
Trump would have to give up tweeting and work 24/7 and would still have a hard time matching all the damage Bush did in his 8 years in office.
As noted in the article, Bush is a flawed vessel for delivering the message he did. Irony and hypocrisy ran rampant.
That said, the speech itself was great. It would be interesting to know who wrote it.
On Nicki Haley:
Haley fit right in with the other neocons on stage and seemed quite comfortable there.
Speech was one vileism after another, Ad infinitum.Delete
Come on, Doug, you know you didn't hear the speech. You're probably merely mouthing what Bannon told you to think.
Yet while dubya was prez you two (Doug and Deuce) consistently sang his praise - just like you two slobber over Trump now.Delete
Well that is because you are a genius and we are not.Delete
You forgot the US system is a binary choice. Who was the opposition? Clinton, Obama, Al Gore?
I voted for George Bush in 2000. By 2003, I realized the mistake I had made. I couldn't in good conscience vote for either Bush or Kerry in 2004, Obama or McCain in 2008, Obama or Romney in 2012, or Trump or Clinton in 2016.
The only election where your argument might have swayed me, perhaps should have, would have been in 2004 in an effort to deny Bush a second term.
Whenever you vote for someone you share in the results, good or bad, if he is elected. Spending 4 years making excuses for my vote isn't something I would like to do.
Jim Davis Don't you have a senseless war to go start so that 3,000 more fine Americans can be slaughtered for no reason other than your desperate desire to finally earn your daddy's love, you vile prick?
Ironically, daddy advised him not to go into Iraq.Delete
Is it possible for a human being to get his head any further up his ass than that "Nucular" moron .ReplyDelete
dumber than dumbReplyDelete
A bullet beats baking dry.ReplyDelete
While Trump talks of tax-cuts for the middle class the GOP talks about different kinds of cuts for them.
As part of their budget plan the GOP proposes cutting $1 trillion from Medicaid and almost $500 billion from Medicare.
As part of their tax plan, in order to cover a small portion of the massive tax breaks for the wealthy and the corporation they are now talking about limiting 401k tax deferment to $2,400 per year.
It amazes me how you guys can continue to defend these people.
It amazes me that you believe the bushwa you are fed daily.
Trump Sans Pet
For an image-conscious president, there seems to be little rush to add a furry friend to the White House brood, making the Trumps the only first family in modern presidential history without a pet.
"There are no plans at this time" to add a pet to the first family, East Wing communications director Stephanie Grisham told CNN.
Trump lived with a poodle, Chappy, with his first wife, Ivana, who wrote in her memoir, "Raising Trump," that "Donald was not a dog fan."
"When I told him I was bringing Chappy with me to New York, he said, 'No,' " she wrote. "'It's me and Chappy or no one!' I insisted, and that was that."
Chappy, she later said, "had an equal dislike of Donald."
Houston Astros beat New York in Game 7 to take the ALCS and will move on to play the Dodgers in the World Series.
Great series. Great for Houston. Especially nice given what they been through with the hurricane.
I'm rooting for the Astros because my boy, Justin Verlander, was traded there by the Tigers in the last few seconds before the trade deadline. Since then, he's gone 9-0 for Houston, changed the momentum of the series in the Game 6 win, and was awarded the MVP trophy for the series. Through good and bad the guy gave 100% in his years in Detroit. He deserves another chance to get to the World Series.
Besides, the longer he plays the longer we get to see Kate Upton in the stands.
Kurds defeated, displaced and divided after Iraq reclaims oil-rich Kirkuk
An independence referendum supposed to strengthen the Kurds’ position ended in a retreat in which Iranian influence was key
Baghdad has now reasserted its authority over territory that the Kurds occupied outside their mandated borders, most of which they had claimed during the three-year fight against the Islamic State (Isis) terrorist group.
The extraordinary capitulation – which followed an indepedence referendum that was supposed to strengthen their hand – has not only shattered Kurdish ambitions for at least a generation;...
The US, which was vehemently opposed to the ballot – especially the decision to include Kirkuk – insisted that despite the latest Iraqi move the areas that the central government has “seized” remain disputed.
Washington sat out the past week of clashes, even as forces loyal to Suleimani helped lead the assault
...Washington sat out ...
The push for independence was a power play by Barzani who remains as president even though his term was supposed to end 2 years ago. There was little chance the independence drive was going to go anywhere. He had too many sides lined up against him from both inside and outside of Kurdistan.
Dem Rep. Trolls Trump Over Release of JFK Files: Will ‘Ted Cruz’s Father Be Exposed?’